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The U.S. Is Abandoning Democracy, Becoming an Aristocracy Instead Washington’s Blog

The U.S. Is Abandoning Democracy, Becoming an Aristocracy Instead Washington’s Blog.

Preface by Washington’s Blog: Given that the 2016 election might be yet another Clinton versus yet another Bush, we certainly do have an aristocracy in America.

-By Eric Zuesse:

Each country is either an aristocracy, ruled by hereditary wealth and status; or else a democracy, ruled by the public or “demos” (without hereditary wealth or status being a major factor deciding a person’s success).

It’s either one, or the other — or somewhere between those two political poles.

The American Revolution was waged against aristocracy (which was the longstanding system), who happened to consist of British aristocrats. The American Revolutionists fought to establish a democracy instead. They did this, though democracy had never before existed (except in very limited form, in very small places, such as ancient Athens, and even there only briefly).

Thus, the American Revolution was a truly revolutionary “revolution,” unlike any before it.

Not only was hereditary status banned by the Constitution (in Article I, Section 9, Clause 8), but wealth itself was removed from political power. A property qualification (a requirement that one must own a certain amount of wealth), for the right to vote, was rejected by the members of the Constitutional Convention in 1787, even though a few members there had wanted such a requirement. However, even the few who did want that, such as Gouverneur Morris, said they wanted a property qualification only in order to prevent an aristocracy in this country; not to start a new one here. That’s how unified against aristocracy they were. Everyone agreed: aristocracy must be avoided.

On 7 August 1787, Morris said to the Convention, “Give the votes to people who have no property, and they will sell them to the rich who will be able to buy them.” James Madison’s record of the Convention went on to say of his speech: “He had long learned not to be the dupe of words. The sound of [the word] Aristocracy therefore had no effect on him. It was the thing, not the name, to which he was opposed, and one of his principal objections to the Constitution as it is now before us, is that it threatens this Country with an Aristocracy.”

But, anyway, Morris’s proposal, for a property-qualification for the right to vote, was voted down.

Madison then gave a speech himself, saying: “The right of suffrage is certainly one of the fundamental articles of republican Government, and ought not to be left to be regulated by the Legislature. A gradual abridgment of this right has been the mode in which Aristocracies have been built on the ruins of popular forms.” Those words could be said by today’s Democrats, against certain proposals by today’s Republicans. But these words were said then by the man who drafted the U.S. Constitution. Today’s Republicans should blush, as supporters of (what the Founders would have viewed as) traitorism: a violation of what this country is fundamentally about.

Everybody at the Constitutional Convention was an enemy to aristocracy; all of them were democrats (small-“D”).

No policy-position is as anti-democratic as is the proposal to eliminate estate taxes — taxes on estates (inheritances) that are very large. The reason is that inheritances are the foundation for any aristocracy. Even the idea or concept of inherited wealth or status is anathema to democracy — a virtual invitationto aristocracy. America’s Founders waged the Revolutionary War to destroy aristocracy here; and that’s the reason why the U.S. Constitution prohibited it, in the only way they knew how (at that time).

Inheritance of a small amount from one’s parents — only enough to give a child a modest boost (yet, still, children of the poor don’t get such a boost) — can be debated by supporters of democracy; but large inheritances must be taxed very heavily, if the concept of democracy is to be meaningful at all.

If inherited wealth or status is permitted, then democracy is doomed: wealth and power will become more concentrated with each successive generation.

However, today’s U.S. has eliminated taxes on all estates below $5 million, and has lowered the taxation-rate on large estates. This means that some babies enter this world with more money than the average American draws as income throughout his or her entire lifetime. Other children are born with little or nothing, and must go into debt in order merely to survive. Their children suffer even worse. Then their wages are garnisheed to pay those debts. Serfdom emerges and spreads.

That’s not the only sign of democracy dying in America. Other signs are more subtle. For example:

On 13 March 2014, Robbie Couch at Huffington Post headlined “Chelsea Clinton Tells SXSW That She’s ‘Obsessed With Diarrhea’ — For a Great Reason,” and showed video of this U.S. princess, daughter of a former President, saying, “I’m obsessed with diarrhea” because “I find the fact that 750,000 children still die every year around the world because of severe dehydration due to diarrhea unacceptable.” Reader-comments following this report did not object to the star-system that has taken over in our country and that propelled her upwards, the system that causes a person of no remarkable abilities (such as this princess) to have news-media flocking to her, and reporting every self-promotion that issues from her (so that not only the ex-President’s wife, but also their daughter, will inherit the dynasty-founder’s public attention), while far-more-capable actual experts on the given subject receive no such hereditary advantage, and are ignored by star-struck media.

Chelsea’s parents are centi-millionaires because, due to Bill Clinton’s (earned) Presidency, they receive (unmerited) enormous speaking fees, of hundreds of thousands of dollars for each speech they give at closed-to-the-press meetings at Goldman Sachs, etc., fundraising for themselves or their political campaigns, plus favored access to investment information, and other such advantages that are typical for aristocrats and that cause inequality of wealth to be soaring in this country — as it now is soaring.

Chelsea Clinton’s paparazzi press constitutes a sign of America’s descending into aristocracy.

But, instead of democratic revulsion against it, the reader-comments to this news-story were like this:

“Hillary 2016 and Chelsea in 2024!!!!”

“goodonya Chelsea!!!!”

“Look at the great genes she has…..smart, smarter & smartest…..U GO GIRL!!!”

“She really is a cutie. More importantly, she is a smart cookie.”

She hadn’t said anything noteworthy, but people were praising her as if she had.

Latching onto a charitable cause, in order to promote oneself, is both good and bad: it is good if the person is especially well-qualified to talk about the subject (which Chelsea Clinton wasn’t), or else is especially articulate and persuasive in making the case (which Chelsea also wasn’t), or else doesn’t easily get sidetracked onto other topics (such as tacos, as Chelsea was — and a quick goodbye to the cause of opposing diarrhea — for which, it turns out, she wasn’t even fundraising).

There are millions of people who can make a case more informatively than Chelsea, or more persuasively, or with fewer of “uh” and “um” and repeated, stumbled, words. But those other people aren’t aristocrats, as Chelsea Clinton is.

And, so, since this country is degenerating from a democracy into an aristocracy, our “news” media become more and more focused on less and less qualified “stars” such as she. Competency is no longer rewarded with success. And incompetency increasingly is. Not only the body-politic, but the economy, thus head downhill.

This is becoming a “whom do you know” country, no longer a “what do you know” one — much less a “what can you do” economy.

Democracy in the U.S. is dying, and those are just some signs of the broader trend toward a rule by aristocrats, otherwise called “plutocracy,” which inevitably means, in fact, rule by thieves, stealing from the masses to enrich the classes: kleptocracy. Because inherited wealth or status is stolen from everyone else, not earned in fair competition.

This is the new welfare program for the super-rich. It’s Robin Hood in reverse. And it is profoundly un-American.

It is even anti-American, in the sense that America’s Founders had waged war against rule by aristocrats. But today’s Americans accept it.

———-

Investigative historian Eric Zuesse is the author, most recently, of They’re Not Even Close: The Democratic vs. Republican Economic Records, 1910-2010and of  CHRIST’S VENTRILOQUISTS: The Event that Created Christianity.

The U.S. Is Abandoning Democracy, Becoming an Aristocracy Instead Washington's Blog

The U.S. Is Abandoning Democracy, Becoming an Aristocracy Instead Washington’s Blog.

Preface by Washington’s Blog: Given that the 2016 election might be yet another Clinton versus yet another Bush, we certainly do have an aristocracy in America.

-By Eric Zuesse:

Each country is either an aristocracy, ruled by hereditary wealth and status; or else a democracy, ruled by the public or “demos” (without hereditary wealth or status being a major factor deciding a person’s success).

It’s either one, or the other — or somewhere between those two political poles.

The American Revolution was waged against aristocracy (which was the longstanding system), who happened to consist of British aristocrats. The American Revolutionists fought to establish a democracy instead. They did this, though democracy had never before existed (except in very limited form, in very small places, such as ancient Athens, and even there only briefly).

Thus, the American Revolution was a truly revolutionary “revolution,” unlike any before it.

Not only was hereditary status banned by the Constitution (in Article I, Section 9, Clause 8), but wealth itself was removed from political power. A property qualification (a requirement that one must own a certain amount of wealth), for the right to vote, was rejected by the members of the Constitutional Convention in 1787, even though a few members there had wanted such a requirement. However, even the few who did want that, such as Gouverneur Morris, said they wanted a property qualification only in order to prevent an aristocracy in this country; not to start a new one here. That’s how unified against aristocracy they were. Everyone agreed: aristocracy must be avoided.

On 7 August 1787, Morris said to the Convention, “Give the votes to people who have no property, and they will sell them to the rich who will be able to buy them.” James Madison’s record of the Convention went on to say of his speech: “He had long learned not to be the dupe of words. The sound of [the word] Aristocracy therefore had no effect on him. It was the thing, not the name, to which he was opposed, and one of his principal objections to the Constitution as it is now before us, is that it threatens this Country with an Aristocracy.”

But, anyway, Morris’s proposal, for a property-qualification for the right to vote, was voted down.

Madison then gave a speech himself, saying: “The right of suffrage is certainly one of the fundamental articles of republican Government, and ought not to be left to be regulated by the Legislature. A gradual abridgment of this right has been the mode in which Aristocracies have been built on the ruins of popular forms.” Those words could be said by today’s Democrats, against certain proposals by today’s Republicans. But these words were said then by the man who drafted the U.S. Constitution. Today’s Republicans should blush, as supporters of (what the Founders would have viewed as) traitorism: a violation of what this country is fundamentally about.

Everybody at the Constitutional Convention was an enemy to aristocracy; all of them were democrats (small-“D”).

No policy-position is as anti-democratic as is the proposal to eliminate estate taxes — taxes on estates (inheritances) that are very large. The reason is that inheritances are the foundation for any aristocracy. Even the idea or concept of inherited wealth or status is anathema to democracy — a virtual invitationto aristocracy. America’s Founders waged the Revolutionary War to destroy aristocracy here; and that’s the reason why the U.S. Constitution prohibited it, in the only way they knew how (at that time).

Inheritance of a small amount from one’s parents — only enough to give a child a modest boost (yet, still, children of the poor don’t get such a boost) — can be debated by supporters of democracy; but large inheritances must be taxed very heavily, if the concept of democracy is to be meaningful at all.

If inherited wealth or status is permitted, then democracy is doomed: wealth and power will become more concentrated with each successive generation.

However, today’s U.S. has eliminated taxes on all estates below $5 million, and has lowered the taxation-rate on large estates. This means that some babies enter this world with more money than the average American draws as income throughout his or her entire lifetime. Other children are born with little or nothing, and must go into debt in order merely to survive. Their children suffer even worse. Then their wages are garnisheed to pay those debts. Serfdom emerges and spreads.

That’s not the only sign of democracy dying in America. Other signs are more subtle. For example:

On 13 March 2014, Robbie Couch at Huffington Post headlined “Chelsea Clinton Tells SXSW That She’s ‘Obsessed With Diarrhea’ — For a Great Reason,” and showed video of this U.S. princess, daughter of a former President, saying, “I’m obsessed with diarrhea” because “I find the fact that 750,000 children still die every year around the world because of severe dehydration due to diarrhea unacceptable.” Reader-comments following this report did not object to the star-system that has taken over in our country and that propelled her upwards, the system that causes a person of no remarkable abilities (such as this princess) to have news-media flocking to her, and reporting every self-promotion that issues from her (so that not only the ex-President’s wife, but also their daughter, will inherit the dynasty-founder’s public attention), while far-more-capable actual experts on the given subject receive no such hereditary advantage, and are ignored by star-struck media.

Chelsea’s parents are centi-millionaires because, due to Bill Clinton’s (earned) Presidency, they receive (unmerited) enormous speaking fees, of hundreds of thousands of dollars for each speech they give at closed-to-the-press meetings at Goldman Sachs, etc., fundraising for themselves or their political campaigns, plus favored access to investment information, and other such advantages that are typical for aristocrats and that cause inequality of wealth to be soaring in this country — as it now is soaring.

Chelsea Clinton’s paparazzi press constitutes a sign of America’s descending into aristocracy.

But, instead of democratic revulsion against it, the reader-comments to this news-story were like this:

“Hillary 2016 and Chelsea in 2024!!!!”

“goodonya Chelsea!!!!”

“Look at the great genes she has…..smart, smarter & smartest…..U GO GIRL!!!”

“She really is a cutie. More importantly, she is a smart cookie.”

She hadn’t said anything noteworthy, but people were praising her as if she had.

Latching onto a charitable cause, in order to promote oneself, is both good and bad: it is good if the person is especially well-qualified to talk about the subject (which Chelsea Clinton wasn’t), or else is especially articulate and persuasive in making the case (which Chelsea also wasn’t), or else doesn’t easily get sidetracked onto other topics (such as tacos, as Chelsea was — and a quick goodbye to the cause of opposing diarrhea — for which, it turns out, she wasn’t even fundraising).

There are millions of people who can make a case more informatively than Chelsea, or more persuasively, or with fewer of “uh” and “um” and repeated, stumbled, words. But those other people aren’t aristocrats, as Chelsea Clinton is.

And, so, since this country is degenerating from a democracy into an aristocracy, our “news” media become more and more focused on less and less qualified “stars” such as she. Competency is no longer rewarded with success. And incompetency increasingly is. Not only the body-politic, but the economy, thus head downhill.

This is becoming a “whom do you know” country, no longer a “what do you know” one — much less a “what can you do” economy.

Democracy in the U.S. is dying, and those are just some signs of the broader trend toward a rule by aristocrats, otherwise called “plutocracy,” which inevitably means, in fact, rule by thieves, stealing from the masses to enrich the classes: kleptocracy. Because inherited wealth or status is stolen from everyone else, not earned in fair competition.

This is the new welfare program for the super-rich. It’s Robin Hood in reverse. And it is profoundly un-American.

It is even anti-American, in the sense that America’s Founders had waged war against rule by aristocrats. But today’s Americans accept it.

———-

Investigative historian Eric Zuesse is the author, most recently, of They’re Not Even Close: The Democratic vs. Republican Economic Records, 1910-2010and of  CHRIST’S VENTRILOQUISTS: The Event that Created Christianity.

FOURTH TURNING: THE PEOPLE vs BIG BROTHER « The Burning Platform

FOURTH TURNING: THE PEOPLE vs BIG BROTHER « The Burning Platform.

 

“The risk of catastrophe will be very high. The nation could erupt into insurrection or civil violence, crack up geographically, or succumb to authoritarian rule. If there is a war, it is likely to be one of maximum risk and effort – in other words, a total war. Every Fourth Turning has registered an upward ratchet in the technology of destruction, and in mankind’s willingness to use it.” – Strauss & Howe – The Fourth Turning

 

 

 

“In the need to develop a capacity to know what potential enemies are doing, the United States government has perfected a technological capability that enables us to monitor the messages that go through the air. Now, that is necessary and important to the United States as we look abroad at enemies or potential enemies. We must know, at the same time, that capability at any time could be turned around on the American people, and no American would have any privacy left such is the capability to monitor everything—telephone conversations, telegrams, it doesn’t matter. There would be no place to hide.

 

If this government ever became a tyrant, if a dictator ever took charge in this country, the technological capacity that the intelligence community has given the government could enable it to impose total tyranny, and there would be no way to fight back because the most careful effort to combine together in resistance to the government, no matter how privately it was done, is within the reach of the government to know. Such is the capability of this technology.

 

I don’t want to see this country ever go across the bridge. I know the capacity that is there to make tyranny total in America, and we must see to it that this agency and all agencies that possess this technology operate within the law and under proper supervision so that we never cross over that abyss. That is the abyss from which there is no return.” – Frank Church on Meet the Press regarding the NSA – 1975

 

Ever since Edward Snowden burst onto the worldwide stage in June 2013, I’ve been wondering how he fits into the fabric of this ongoing Fourth Turning. This period of Crisis that arrives like clockwork, 60 to 70 years after the end of the previous Fourth Turning (Civil War – 66 years after American Revolution, Great Depression/World War II – 64 years after Civil War, Global Financial Crisis – 62 years after World War II), arrived in September 2008 with the Federal Reserve created collapse of the global financial system. We are now five and a half years into this Fourth Turning, with its climax not likely until the late-2020’s. At this point in previous Fourth Turnings a regeneracy had unified sides in their cause and a grey champion or champions (Ben Franklin/Samuel Adams, Lincoln/Davis, FDR) had stepped forward to lead. Thus far, no one from the Prophet generation has been able to unify the nation and create a sense of common civic purpose. Societal trust continues to implode, as faith in political, financial, corporate, and religious institutions spirals downward. There is no sign of a unifying regeneracy on the horizon.

 

The core elements of this Fourth Turning continue to propel this Crisis: debt, civic decay, global disorder. Central bankers, politicians, and government bureaucrats have been able to fashion the illusion of recovery and return to normalcy, but their “solutions” are nothing more than smoke and mirrors exacerbating the next bloodier violent stage of this Fourth Turning. The emergencies will become increasingly dire, triggering unforeseen reactions and unintended consequences. The civic fabric of our society will be torn asunder.

 

In retrospect, the spark might seem as ominous as a financial crash, as ordinary as a national election, or as trivial as a Tea Party. The catalyst will unfold according to a basic Crisis dynamic that underlies all of these scenarios: An initial spark will trigger a chain reaction of unyielding responses and further emergencies. The core elements of these scenarios (debt, civic decay, global disorder) will matter more than the details, which the catalyst will juxtapose and connect in some unknowable way. If foreign societies are also entering a Fourth Turning, this could accelerate the chain reaction. At home and abroad, these events will reflect the tearing of the civic fabric at points of extreme vulnerability – problem areas where America will have neglected, denied, or delayed needed action.” – The Fourth Turning – Strauss & Howe

 

Debt

 

The core crisis element of debt is far worse than it was at the outset of this Crisis in September 2008. The National Debt has risen from $9.7 trillion to $17.5 trillion, an 80% increase in five and half years. It took 215 years for the country to accumulate as much debt as it has accumulated since the start of this Crisis. We continue to add $2.8 billion a day to the National debt, and the president declares it is time for this austerity to end. The total unfunded liabilities of the Federal government for Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, government pensions and now Obamacare exceeds $200 trillion and is mathematically impossible to honor. Corporate debt stands at an all-time high. Margin debt is at record levels, as faith in the Federal Reserve’s ability to levitate the stock market borders on delusional. Consumer debt has reached new heights, as the government doles out subprime auto loans to deadbeats and subprime student loans to future University of Phoenix Einsteins. Global debt has surged by 40% since 2008 to over $100 trillion, as central bankers have attempted to cure a disease caused by debt with more debt.

 

All of this debt accumulation is compliments of Bernanke/Yellen and the Federal Reserve, who have produced this new debt bubble with their zero interest rate policy and quantitative easing that has driven their balance sheet from $935 billion of mostly Treasury bonds in September 2008 to $4.2 trillion of toxic mortgage garbage acquired from their owners – the insolvent Too Big To Trust Wall Street banks. This entire house of cards is reliant upon permanently low interest rates, the faith of foreigners in our lies, and trust in Ivy League educated economists captured by Wall Street. This debt laden house of cards sits atop hundreds of trillions of derivatives of mass destruction used by the Wall Street casinos to generate “riskless” profits. When, not if, a trigger ignites this explosive concoction of debt, the collapse will be epic and the violent phase of this Fourth Turning will commence.

 

Civic Decay

 

The core crisis element of civic decay is evident everywhere you turn. Our failed public educational system is responsible for much of the civic decay, as a highly educated critical thinking populace is our only defense against a small cabal of bankers and billionaires acquiring unwarranted influence and control over our country. Our children have been taught how to feel and to believe government propaganda. The atrocious educational system is not a mistake. It has been designed and manipulated by your owners to produce the results they desire, as explained bluntly by George Carlin.

 

 

 

 

 

“There’s a reason that education sucks, and it’s the same reason it will never ever ever be fixed. It’s never going to get any better, don’t look for it. Be happy with what you’ve got. Because the owners of this country don’t want that. I’m talking about the real owners now, the big, wealthy, business interests that control all things and make the big decisions. They spend billions of dollars every year lobbying to get what they want. Well, we know what they want; they want more for themselves and less for everybody else. But I’ll tell you what they don’t want—they don’t want a population of citizens capable of critical thinking. They don’t want well informed, well educated people capable of critical thinking. They’re not interested in that. That doesn’t help them. That’s against their interest.”

 

The urban ghettos become more dangerous and uninhabitable by the day. The inner cities are crumbling under the weight of welfare spending and declining tax revenues. The very welfare policies begun fifty years ago to alleviate poverty have hopelessly enslaved the poor and ignorant in permanent squalor and destitution. The four decade old drug war has done nothing to reduce the use of drugs. It has benefited the corporate prison industry, as millions have been thrown into prison for minor drug offenses. Meanwhile, millions more have been legally addicted to drugs peddled by the corporate healthcare complex. The culture warriors and advocates of new rights for every special interest group continue their never ending battles which receive an inordinate amount of publicity from the corporate media. Class warfare is simmering and being inflamed by politicians pushing their particular agendas. Violence provoked by race and religion is growing by the day. The fault lines are visible and the imminent financial earthquake will push distress levels beyond the breaking point. Once the EBT cards stop working, all hell will break loose. Three days of panic will empty grocery store shelves and the National Guard will be called out to try and restore control.

 

Global Disorder

 

The core crisis element of global disorder is evident everywhere you turn. The false flag revolution in the Ukraine, initiated by the U.S. and EU in order to blunt Russia’s control of natural gas to Europe, has the potential to erupt into a full blown shooting war at any moment. The attempt by Saudi Arabia, Israel and the U.S. to overthrow the Syrian dictator in order to run a natural gas pipeline across their land into Europe was blunted by Russia. Iraq is roiled in a civil war, after the U.S. invaded, occupied and destabilized the country. After 12 years of occupation, Afghanistan is more dysfunctional and dangerous than it was before the U.S. saved them from the evil Taliban. Unrest, violent protests, and brutal measures by rulers continue in Egypt, Turkey, Thailand, Venezuela, Bahrain, Brazil, and throughout Africa. American predator drones roam the skies of the world murdering suspected terrorists. The European Union is insolvent, with Greece, Spain, Italy and Portugal propped up with newly created debt. Austerity for the people and prosperity for the bankers is creating tremendous distress and tension across the continent. A global volcanic eruption is in the offing.

 

It is clear to me the American Empire is in terminal decline. Hubris, delusion, corruption, foolish disregard for future generations and endless foreign follies have set in motion a chain of events that will lead to a cascading sequence of debt defaults, mass poverty, collapsing financial markets, and hyperinflation or deflation, depending on the actions of feckless bankers and politicians. There is no avoiding the tragic outcome brought on by decades of bad choices and a century of allowing private banking interests to control our currency. The “emergency” QE and ZIRP responses by the Federal Reserve to the Federal Reserve created 2008 financial collapse continue, even though the propaganda peddled by the Deep State tries to convince the public we have fully recovered. This grand fraud cannot go on forever. Ponzi schemes no longer work once you run out of dupes. With societal trust levels approaching all-time lows and foreign countries beginning to understand they are the dupes, another global financial crisis is a lock.

 

The Snowden Factor

 

With ten to fifteen years likely remaining in this Fourth Turning Crisis, people familiar with generational turnings can’t help but ponder what will happen next. Linear thinkers, who constitute the majority, mistakenly believe things will magically return to normal and we’ll continue our never ending forward human progress. Their ignorance of history and generational turnings that recur like the four seasons will bite them in the ass. We are being flung forward across the vast chaos of time and our existing social order will be transformed beyond recognition into something far better or far worse. The actual events over the coming decade are unknowable in advance, but the mood and reactions of the generational archetypes to these events are predictable. The actions of individuals will matter during this Fourth Turning. The majority are trapped in their propaganda induced, techno distracted stupor of willful ignorance. It will take a minority of liberty minded individuals, who honor the principles of the U.S. Constitution and are willing to sacrifice their lives, to prevail in the coming struggle.

 

Despite fog engulfing the path of future events, we know they will be propelled by debt, civic decay, and global disorder. Finding a unifying grey champion figure seems unlikely at this point. I believe the revelations by Edward Snowden have set the course for future events during this Fourth Turning. The choices of private citizens, like Snowden, Assange, and Manning, have made a difference. The choices we all make over the next ten years will make a difference. A battle for the soul of this country is underway. The Deep State is firmly ingrained, controlling the financial, political and educational systems, while using their vast wealth to perpetuate endless war, and domination of the media to manipulate the masses with propaganda and triviality. They are powerful and malevolent. They will not relinquish their supremacy and wealth willingly.

 

Snowden has revealed the evil intent of the ruling class and their willingness to trash the Constitution in their psychopathic pursuit of mammon. The mass surveillance of the entire population, locking down of an entire city in pursuit of two teenagers, military training exercises in major metropolitan areas, militarization of local police forces by DHS, crushing peaceful demonstrations with brute force, attempting to restrict and confiscate guns, molesting innocent airline passengers, executive orders utilized on a regular basis by the president, and treating all citizens like suspects has set the stage for the coming conflict. Strauss & Howe warned that history has shown armed conflict is always a major ingredient during a Fourth Turning.

 

“History offers even more sobering warnings: Armed confrontation usually occurs around the climax of Crisis. If there is confrontation, it is likely to lead to war. This could be any kind of war – class war, sectional war, war against global anarchists or terrorists, or superpower war. If there is war, it is likely to culminate in total war, fought until the losing side has been rendered nil – its will broken, territory taken, and leaders captured.” – The Fourth Turning – Strauss & Howe -1997

 

It appears to me the Deep State is preparing for armed conflict with the people. Why else would they be utilizing Big Brother methods of surveillance, militarization of police forces  and Gestapo like tactics of intimidation to control the masses? This doesn’t happen in a democratic republic where private individuals are supposed to know everything done by public government servants, not vice versa. They know the cheap, easy to access energy resources are essentially depleted. They know the system they have built upon a foundation of cheap energy and cheap debt is unsustainable and will crash in the near future. They know their fiat currency scheme is failing.They know it is going to come crashing down.  

 

They know America and the world will plunge into an era of depression, violence, and war. They also know they want to retain their wealth, power and control. There is no possibility the existing establishment can be purged through the ballot box. It’s a one party Big Brother system that provides the illusion of choice to the Proles. Like it or not, the only way this country can cast off the shackles of the banking, corporate, fascist elites, and the government surveillance state is through an armed revolution. The alternative is to allow an authoritarian regime, on par with Hitler, Stalin and Mao, to rise from the ashes of our financial collapse.This is a distinct possibility, given the ignorance and helplessness of most Americans after decades of government education and propaganda.       

 

The average mentally asleep American cannot conceive of armed conflict within the borders of the U.S. War, violence and dead bodies are something they see on their 52 inch HDTVs while gobbling chicken wings and cheetos in their Barcalounger. We’ve allowed a banking cartel and their central bank puppets to warp and deform our financial system into a hideous façade, sold to the masses as free market capitalism. We’ve allowed corporate interests to capture our political system through bribery and corruption.

 

We’ve allowed the rise of a surveillance state that has stripped us of our privacy, freedom, liberty and individuality in a futile pursuit of safety and security. We’ve allowed a military industrial complex to exercise undue influence in Washington DC, leading to endless undeclared wars designed to enrich the arms makers. We’ve allowed the corporate media and the government education complex to use propaganda, misinformation and social engineering techniques to dumb down the masses and make them compliant consumers. These delusions will be shattered when our financial and economic system no longer functions. The end is approaching rapidly and very few see it coming.

 

Glory or Ruin?

 

The scenario I envision is a collapse of our debt saturated financial system, with a domino effect of corporate, personal, and governmental defaults, exacerbated by the trillions of currency, interest rate, and stock derivatives. Global stock markets will crash. Trillions in paper wealth will evaporate into thin air. The Greater Depression will gain a choke-hold around the world. Mass bankruptcies, unemployment and poverty will sweep across the land. The social safety net will tear under the weight of un-payable entitlements. Riots and unrest will breakout in urban areas. Armed citizens in rural areas will begin to assemble in small units. The police and National Guard will be unable to regain control. The military will be called on to suppress any and all resistance to the Federal government. This act of war will spur further resistance from liberty minded armed patriots. The new American Revolution will have begun. Leaders will arise in the name of freedom. Regional and local bands of fighters will use guerilla tactics to defeat a slow top heavy military dependent upon technology and vast quantities of oil. A dictatorial regime may assume power on a Federal level. A breakup of the nation into regional states is a distinct possibility.

 

With the American Empire crumbling from within, our international influence will wane. With China also in the midst of a Fourth Turning, their debt bubble will burst and social unrest will explode into civil war. Global disorder, wars, terrorism, and financial collapse will lead to a dramatic decrease in oil production, further sinking the world into depression. The tensions caused by worldwide recession will lead to the rise of authoritarian regimes and global warfare. With “advances” in technological warfare and the proliferation of nuclear warheads, this scenario has the potential to end life on earth as we know it. The modern world could be set back into the stone-age with the push of a button. There are no guarantees of a happy ending for humanity.

 

The outcome of this Fourth Turning is dependent upon the actions of a minority of critical thinking Americans who decide to act. No one can avoid the trials and tribulations that lie ahead. We will be faced with immense challenges. Courage and sacrifice will be required in large doses. Elders will need to lead and millennials will need to carry a heavy load, doing most of the dying. The very survival of our society hangs in the balance. Edward Snowden has provided an example of the sacrifice required during this Fourth Turning. How we respond and the choices we make over the next decade will determine whether this Fourth Turning will result in glory or ruin for our nation.

 

“Eventually, all of America’s lesser problems will combine into one giant problem. The very survival of the society will feel at stake, as leaders lead and people follow. The emergent society may be something better, a nation that sustains its Framers’ visions with a robust new pride. Or it may be something unspeakably worse. The Fourth Turning will be a time of glory or ruin.” – Strauss & Howe – The Fourth Turning

 

Click these links to read the first two parts of this three part series:

 

Do No Evil Google – Censor & Snitch for the State

 

Google, China, the NSA and the Fourth Turning

DEATH OF INDIVIDUALISM « The Burning Platform

DEATH OF INDIVIDUALISM « The Burning Platform.

Posted from The Daily Bell without comment, an editorial by Wendy McElroy.

http://www.thedailybell.com/editorials/34802/Wendy-McElroy-Death-by-Methodological-Individualism/

The great political lie is that individuals need the state. It is a lie on at least two levels.
The first layer of the great lie: It states the opposite of what is true; the state needs individuals. And the state is desperate for you to believe it is indispensable to your life. If it were not there to “take care of you,” the state wants you to believe that your children would be uneducated, the roads would remain unpaved, health care would disappear, foreign tanks would roll past your doorstep and crime would run amok in the streets. Nonsense.

The state produces nothing; it only takes and consumes what productive individuals create. The few state ‘services’ that mimic free-market ones are so notoriously inefficient and incompetent that they are often worse than nothing at all; public schools are an example. Moreover, the purpose of the ‘services’ is not to benefit society but to skim tax dollars from it and to exert social control over it. If the state wanted society to function at its potential, then it would step out of the way of private competitors rather than hobble or ban them. Instead, it obstructs private services precisely because they perform far better and less expensively.

The second layer of the great lie is its foundation. Namely, there is no “state” as opposed to individuals. Both the state and society consist of nothing more than their individual members and the sum total of their interactions. In other words, the state consists of individuals who organize together according to a set of rules; the individuals cooperate together in order to perform specific acts, from passing legislation to delivering tax bills. But every act of the state devolves to one individual dealing with another individual. In his magnum opus, Human Action, the Austrian economist Ludwig von Mises described this dynamic. “First we must realize that all actions are performed by individuals… If we scrutinize the meaning of the various actions performed by individuals we must necessarily learn everything about the actions of the collective whole. For a social collective has no existence and reality outside of the individual members’ actions.” The state exists only through its individual members.

In viewing abstractions such as “the state” as the sum total of their individual members, Mises did not deny the importance of the abstractions. Quite the contrary. Mises explained, “Methodological individualism, far from contesting the significance of such collective wholes, considers it as one of its main tasks to describe and to analyze their becoming and their disappearing, their changing structures, and their operation. And it chooses the only method fitted to solve this problem satisfactorily.” Methodological individualism is an analytical tool through which to make sense of the collectives such as the state, society and family.

With regard to the state, Mises offered an example of how to analyze its dynamics. “The hangman, not the state, executes a criminal. It is the meaning of those concerned that discerns in the hangman’s action an action of the state.” This is a key point. The people who look upon the hanging see nothing more than one individual killing another individual; that is the visceral reality before their eyes. They ‘see’ a state action and an execution only because they grant the hangman the legitimacy of being a representative of the collective known as “the state.” Their belief converts what would be a wanton killing into a justified execution.

And, yet, Mises wrote, “It is illusory to believe that it is possible to visualize collective wholes… We can see a crowd, i.e., a multitude of people.” But, as with the hangman, we do not see authority or “the state”; all we see are people. Mises continued: “Whether this crowd is a mere gathering…or any other kind of social entity is a question which can only be answered by understanding the meaning which they themselves attach to their presence. And this meaning is always the meaning of individuals…. [A] mental process makes us recognize social entities.” Individuals who form the state through their membership attach a specific meaning to gathering and coordinating with each other. The meaning or purpose is to exercise the perceived privilege to rule over individuals who are non-members. To do so, it is necessary to convince non-members of the state’s legitimacy.

The 18th century political philosopher William Godwin – the first modern proponent of anarchism – observed, “Government is founded on an opinion… A nation must have learned to respect a king, before a king can exercise any authority over them.” The process by which this opinion is formed can be called “mystification.” This is the process by which the commonplace is elevated to the exalted. Thus the state comes to be seen as more than its individual members, as higher than society. The state becomes an independent entity to which individuals swear loyalty, for which they send their children to die in wars and toward which they genuflect. The mystique is maintained in many ways, including: the pomp of swearing-in ceremonies; awe-inspiring buildings such as the Supreme Court; the rituals of saluting flags with hands over the heart; uniforms that minimize individuality; the appeal to tradition such as the American Revolution; and, most importantly, the public schools that teach the legitimacy of the state along with the alphabet.

Mystification sanctifies the actions taken by individuals in the name of the state. That is, a double standard of morality is introduced – one for individuals who are members of the state and another for non-members. The double standard contradicts a longstanding principle of liberty; namely, that a violation of violates committed by an individual remains a violation of rights when performed by a group of individuals. The group does not relinquish personal responsibility by acting in someone else’s name. Rape is no less rape because a gang is involved or because they shout “do for England!” A 1657 pamphlet (ascribed to the rebel Colonel Titan) argued, “What can be more absurd in nature and contrary to all common sense than to call him Thief and kill him that comes alone… and to call him Lord Protector and obey him that robs me with regiments and troops?” And, yet, this is what the state accomplishes. It converts an act that would be theft if committed by an individual into a ‘legitimate’ act of taxation when committed by a group in the name of the state.

The state pulls off this moral sleight-of-hand because non-member individuals accept that it functions by a different standard of morality. The radical individualist R.C. Hoiles, who built a publishing empire, called this double standard “The Most Harmful Error Most Honest People Make.” An editorial in his flagship newspaper The Orange County Register (Dec. 17, 1956) explained that the error “is the belief that a group or a government can do things that would be harmful and wicked if done by an individual and produce results that are not harmful, unjust and wicked. It is the belief that a number of people doing a thing that is wrong for an individual to do, can make it right and just.”

Hoiles went one step farther. He went beyond the visible violations of right that occur under the double standard to make a more subtle point. In another Register editorial (Oct. 31, 1958), he argued that the “profit motive” was more accurately called the “hope of rewards.” A man worked for one of two reasons: “Either he has hope of rewards or he is forced.” The former was freedom; the latter was slavery. A double standard by which the state expropriated the wealth which individuals had freely produced only created slavery. The state destroyed the “hope of rewards” not only through direct violation of rights such as taxation but also by granting legal privileges to individuals who comprised entities such as corporations. The privileges constituted theft because they robbed private producers of the right to compete fairly and, so, they robbed individuals of hope itself.

The state exists as an engine of privilege only because the vast majority of people believe that the individuals who comprise it can properly operate on a double standard. If state agents, from the president to post office workers, were viewed as individuals who are bound to the same rules of decency as the rest of us, then the state as we know it would crumble as the illusion it is. Freedom will come when the same standard of morality is applied to the individuals who are the state; the path to freedom is methodological individualism.

 

Non-Participation As An Effective Weapon Against Tyranny

Non-Participation As An Effective Weapon Against Tyranny. (FULL ARTICLE)

Legitimate revolution takes time, patience and fortitude. Unfortunately, this is a strategic concept that is lost on many Americans today who suffer from a now common ailment of attention deficit disorder and an obsession with immediate gratification. Even some who have their hearts in the right place and who work to defend and resurrect our nation’s founding ideals seem to believe that any action to defeat corrupt oligarchy must be effective immediately, otherwise, it’s not worth the attempt. History, of course, teaches us the opposite.

The American rebellion against the British monarchy was not an abrupt or immediate affair. Anger and unrest over the trespasses of King George simmered for decades. The first British troops stationed with the intent to stifle colonial freedoms arrived in Massachusetts in 1768. The Boston Massacre took place in 1770, and still, the Founders refused to leap into open retaliation. Lexington Green and the “shot heard around the world” did not take place until April 19, 1775. The Revolution took years to culminate into an actual physical war. So what did the colonists do in the meantime? Sit on their hands?

In fact, early Americans employed economic tactics against their enemy long before they picked up muskets and powder. British imports were turned away or destroyed. Clothing and other items normally shipped from Europe to be sold in the colonies were boycotted, while colonists began producing all of their own survival necessities. They refused to participate in the system that was designed to enslave them and this gave them a foundation on which to launch their eventual fight for liberty. Without efforts in economic independence, the American Revolution may not have ever taken place….

 

A revolution comes in stages — Occupy or otherwise

A revolution comes in stages — Occupy or otherwise. (FULL ARTICLE)

All of us hold an idea about how progressive change might happen, whether or not we spell it out explicitly. For some it’s an elaboration of grassroots alternative-building, for others it starts with flooding legislators with advocacy. One way or another, we all have one. But, while reading Nathan Schneider’s important recent piece on the Occupy movement in The Nation, I was reminded of the power of a theory of change to shape our actions.

Nathan — who is also an editor at Waging Nonviolence — turns to the theory of change developed by my friend Bill Moyer, the late civil rights organizer who went on to influence a number of social justice campaigns. Bill identified a series of eight stages that successful movements tend to go through on their way to victory; he called his theory the Movement Action Plan. Nathan finds that Bill’s fifth stage helps us understand Occupy in the past year or so, when a lot of participants have felt discouraged. Bill found that successful movements usually go through a let-down after the adrenalin rush of sudden growth in stage four, only to recover in stage six and have a chance of winning.


The eight stages of the Movement Action Plan: (source: Wikipedia)

  • Critical social problem exists
  • Prove failure of official institutions
  • Ripening conditions
  • Take off
  • Perception of failure
  • Majority public opinion
  • Success
  • Continuation…

 

Jesse Ventura Calls For “American Revolution” Against The “Corrupt System” | Zero Hedge

Jesse Ventura Calls For “American Revolution” Against The “Corrupt System” | Zero Hedge. (FULL ARTICLE)

The irony of Jesse Ventura calling for a new “American Revolution” in a conversation with Brit Piers Morgan is not lost on us but the former Governor of Minnesota asks some awkwardly open questions in this ‘colorful’ interview. Ventura asked if the government’s shut down, “That should mean we shouldn’t have to pay any taxes, right?” He called for another American revolution to push back against the “corrupt system” created by Democrats and Republicans in WashingtonHe told Morgan the two-party system has legalized “bribery” for access, suggesting he’s fed up enough to actually run for president in 2016. Ventura called both parties “gangs,” and Morgan admitted he had to agree, adding that they’re “overpaid, underworked children!” The discussion then veers from Obamacare, Ventura’s run for President, and the JFK conspiracy…

 

charles hugh smith-The Next American Revolution

charles hugh smith-The Next American Revolution.

 

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